The Shake from the Smoke: A Catalyst for Change

By Allister Greene

The shock waves have started. The epicenter is California, and though there is no surprise there, this is not an earthquake, this is a revolution, and this is legalization. In a very short time, all cannabis users, activists, and supporters worldwide, will be watching as Californians take to the busy ballot polls to vote and potentially shoot the fireworks that will let us all taste freedom. This vote on Proposition 19 (The Regulate, Control, and Tax Cannabis Act of 2010) has the full potential to change, if not save, this world.

As an American citizen, and as a part of the first nations of this land, this is a long awaited vision taking the right steps to the spiritual freedom that this country needs, let alone the world. I am not a California citizen; I live in the Midwest, in a state known for one big race track – Indiana. It is a state where medical cannabis does not even stand a chance in the State Legislature. This is because the majority of politicians are driven by circles that return to the same mistakes, and the same painful tactics, that prohibition is famous for. To make matters worse, Indiana – my state – is falling apart. Many others states and countries were affected by the economic downfall brought in part by corporate greed and an international drug war that has gone on for over three decades. Other things my state is famous for are prisons, mostly cannabis related prisoners of war, and dying fields from over farming. Most years, Indiana is in the top three of most polluted states; even here legalization could save millions and bring in billions. This is why the fault lines need to tremble so hard that, even in the middle of nowhere, states like Indiana will have to rebuild. This is the state known as the crossroads of America, and only with the aftershock of legalization spreading can this state keep that title. Years ago, this was a hemp state, and it needs to be again. Even further back, before colonization, there were small cannabis forests for centuries – this land needs its medicine back.

What Prop. 19 does is not only make it legal, but lawful and “allows people 21 years old or older to possess, cultivate, or transport marijuana for personal use. Pemits local governments to regulate and tax commercial production and sale of marijuana to people 21 years old or older. Prohibits people from possessing marijuana on school grounds, using it in public, smoking it while minors are present, or providing it to anyone under 21 years old.” (California ballot initiative Proposition 19) This is the first half of the opening statement of what California voters will be voting on Nov. 2. This vote will not only allow the purchase of one ounce for personal use, but will also allow cannabis to be carried on a person in public. It also makes any personal harvest, no matter how much the yield from a 25-square-foot garden, lawful.

The rules might not all be perfect yet in everyone eyes, but as written in Proposition 19 the voters can work to change and make the laws move more towards the freedom we all want and need. A freedom we have needed since the Marijuana Tax Act of 1937 was passed by the U.S Congress and Senate, and signed into law by Franklin D. Roosevelt. The reason stemming from racism and an urge to arrest and dehumanize the public view of Hispanics, Blacks, and Native American Indians with laws that would target them and their cultures. Soon though, it would also lead to the drive of an Imperialistic and ethnocentric need to try and control this country’s citizens, and all the citizens of the world, and the organic plant matters they put in their body.

Over the years our government, and most of the governments of the world, have spent more money than on any other single war, and for most countries more than all their wars combined, on the “War on Drugs”—wasting most of that money on the prohibition of cannabis. The criminalization of cannabis has driven our country to the point where it is illegal to grow hemp, which cannot be used for any sort of mind-altering drug use, but can be used in uncountable ways to help save the world as we know it. Through propaganda, cover ups of medical discoveries, the constant watchful eyes, and the tombstone conjuring raids and prisons, we have rotted out a hole in this world that affects every living person in one way or another. The scare tactics are to force a cure on those they see as addicts; in the die-hard prohibitionist eyes this cure works even if death is the result. In a lot of ways, we the cannabis users and activists have almost become like a breed of bacteria – we became resistant to their treat- ment. And like some bacteria are needed for biological bodies to hold life – some are even called the “good kind” of bacteria – the cannabis users and activist of the world have proven resistant, and defiant. And like the plant can restore balance, we can heal the world with one plant.

Only with the passing of Proposition 19 can we start healing. This is not the time to wait; this is the bill that is on the ballet now, so it needs to be passed now. The opposition is ugly, and not because it is from who we expected – the United States of America’s drug enforcement agency, the Republicans pushing it as immoral, the pharmaceutical companies, and beer, wine, and liquor companies who are afraid of competition – these were the ones we knew would be suiting up in armor against it. The shock came when we had to break out warships against California cannabis users who are against the legalization measure. We have seen all sorts of types, much like the Tea party movement, and both can almost be categorized like a taxonomy study of a new plant family being found in the rainforest.

Of the cannabis users who are being called Stoners Against Legalization, the motives for why they are telling people to vote no, can be categorized in a few different ways. There are those who are afraid, or basically pessimistic that it won’t go the way it is written to their understanding. They see it as a dream that just can’t happen, and think that the government will find holes in the law once passed, and make it worse or stay the same somehow. Then there are those that just don’t think it goes far enough, even though it’s a huge pole-vault away from what we have now. Some because it was not the voter initiative that the group they belong to wrote, but have yet to get on the ballot. Their pride or their unwillingness to work in steps, and an all or nothing stance, gets in the way of seeing how much more we can achieve after passing Prop 19. One of the worst types of the stoners against legalization bunch are the “I gots mine” bunch that feel because they have a medical card and refuse to read the plain text that states: “Ensure that if a city decides it does want to tax and regulate the buying and selling of cannabis (to and from adults only), that a strictly controlled legal system is implemented to oversee and regulate cultivation, distribution, and sales, and that the city will have control over how and how much cannabis can be bought and sold, except as permitted under Health and Safety Sections 11362.5 and 11362.7 through 11362.9.” (California ballot initiative Proposition 19) This group of anti-Prop 19 medical users and activist often refuse to even listen to an argument about the medical prop 215 not being hurt, but strengthened, by the passing of Proposition 19.

The worst type of stoner against legalization are those both in the legal medical field making money on the selling of pot and/or medical cards, and those on the black-market selling at inflated prices that they control and the medical cannabis sellers conform to. These are the ones driven by greed, where everything is about the bottom line, and that is the money line. They want everything for themselves and refuse to even argue – like they at all respect anyone that’s not paying them money to talk. They don’t fight for us, they fight for their swimming pool of green cash and green cannabis.

We are watching the epicenter, waiting for all the shakes and falling infrastructure of the “War on Drugs” to come crashing down. Cannabis will free our souls, and the roots of hemp and cannabis will follow every fault line across the world. Most earthquakes destroy, but this one will be the catalyst that will rebuild the world instead. If you know any Californians, tell them to Vote Yes Nov. 2, and help save the world. We are ready for the revolution. With it, the medical world will be opened for studying and finding cures, the economy will grow again, and the planet might start to buzz with a happy flight of hope in the arms of our most sacred plant.